The relationship between autism spectrum and sleep-wake traits.

TitleThe relationship between autism spectrum and sleep-wake traits.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsSmidt SDElkhatib, Ghorai A, Taylor SC, Gehringer BN, Dow HC, Langer A, Rawot E, Zhang J, Mitchell JA, Rader DJ, Almasy L, Brodkin ES, Bućan M
JournalAutism Res
Date Published2021 Dec 29

Autistic children and adults often have sleep disturbances, which may affect their and their family's quality of life. Yet, the relationship between sleep-wake patterns and autism spectrum traits is understudied. Identifying such relationships could lead to future research elucidating common mechanistic underpinnings. Thus, we aimed to determine whether sleep-wake patterns, specifically related to sleep, physical activity, and the daily sleep-wake rhythm (i.e., circadian rhythm), are associated with autism spectrum-related traits. Accelerometer-derived sleep-wake parameters were estimated in individuals with autistic spectrum traits and their family members (N = 267). We evaluated autism spectrum traits using the Social Responsiveness Scale (SRS) to assess the presence and severity of social impairment and the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF) to assess executive function. The linear multivariate regression analysis (using SOLAR-Eclipse) showed that in adults, increased core autism spectrum traits and executive dysfunction were associated with disruption of several sleep-wake parameters, particularly related to the daily sleep-wake rhythm, and that executive dysfunction was associated with disrupted sleep quality and level of physical activity. We highlight the interplay between daytime function and disrupted sleep-wake patterns, specifically related to the daily sleep-wake rhythm, that could guide future research into common mechanisms.

Alternate JournalAutism Res
PubMed ID34967137
Grant List / / Autism Spectrum Program of Excellence /
T32HL07713 / HL / NHLBI NIH HHS / United States
R01HD100421-01 / / National Institute of Child Health and Human Development /
R21MH093415 / MH / NIMH NIH HHS / United States
/ / Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania /